Let there be Light

christmas lights 017

Our son brought up our pre-lit Christmas tree last week, before he picked us up at the airport. He thought I might want to decorate it for our family Thanksgiving at our house. I think this child in his late 40’s still gets excited about Christmas because he already had a gift wrapped and under the tree. I thanked him but wasn’t ready to decorate.

I had been frustrated with how the materialism of Christmas was sneaking up to overtake Thanksgiving. I wanted to keep Thanksgiving for thanks giving. And then my sister died three days before Thanksgiving. Last week my mind was able to do the gymnastics of tumbling between a happy holiday feast with most of our family and the grief of my/our loss. But that is so tiring – being in the two realities of joy and pain.

I’ve turned on the tree lights most days. I’m enjoying the symbolism of this light in my livingroom. For those of us who have chosen to believe that Jesus came to earth as an infant in order to fulfill the Jewish prophesy of a savior, these lights symbolize the coming of our Light in the darkness of the world. These lights remind me of the purpose of Advent – to anticipate the coming of true joy. It is a time of preparation, as I prepare my heart and decorate my home for His coming.

I’m not feeling the excitement quite yet – instead I’m experiencing a very quiet, gentle transition. The ache in my heart longs for and is experiencing the comfort I receive from my faith. But the pain is still there because that is a part of loving and losing. I look forward to our Christmas celebration and I’m preparing with the purchasing of gifts and making of plans with family members. As I make that death walk once again, my heart is also reaching for the joy of living. Living in both worlds means that I’m not overcome with grief nor able to fully engage in the excitement. That is okay for now, because that is where I am.

The lights on my Christmas tree are keeping me centered. They are reminding me that although a part of my life has died, there is a new day with renewed life for me right now. And when I am ready I will be able to celebrate Christmas totally without disrespect for the lost life within my sister.

This post found it’s inspiration in the WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge: Let there be Light. To see more interpretations, click on this link:

http://dailypost.wordpress.com/2013/11/29/photo-challenge-lights/.

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37 Comments »

    • Thanks – it is obviously what I need because your comment brought tears to my eyes. šŸ™‚ It is so nice to have blogging friends who hear – like you.

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  1. Sorry for your loss, Pat. Grief is particularly heightened at this time of year. But regardless of one`s faith, it is a time for turning the old into the new, for transition, for moving forward and for hope.
    Lovely post. Thank you.

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    • Thanks. I didn’t ever want children moving back home, but our son has been great to live with. He has his space downstairs and we share the tv room and kitchen. Hugs back.

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    • Thanks, and I am pulling up lots of memories, of my sister and others that have died. Funny how a death does that. I am really enjoying the tree without decorations. It seems so simple and uncomplicated. Yes, that is what I need.

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  2. Dear Pat,
    I am so sorry to hear about your sister. Some people find Christmas hard to bear after losing a loved one, but it’s so good that you are able to take comfort from it, and help you with the transition. Sending you hugs and warm wishes for comfort and joy.

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  3. Let this Christmas be a joy in your heart. Call your sister Christmas Eve. You both will appreciate it. She’s undoubtedly feeling like you are. She needs comfort and solace, too. And hugs. God bless you and yours.

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